Late Rally Comes Up Short Saturday as Alabama Softball Falls to Auburn, 4-1
Alabama softball had the potential game-tying run at the plate in the bottom of the seventh with nobody out, but the late rally fell just short as the Crimson Tide lost to Auburn, 4-1, Saturday night at Rhoads Stadium.
Alabama (39-15, 11-11 SEC) and Auburn (45-8, 17-6 SEC) each tallied eight hits but the Tigers ultimately got the timely hit in the form of a three-run double by Alyssa Rivera that capped a four-run fifth inning for Auburn. Alabama got one back in the sixth on an RBI single by Gabby Callaway and back-to-back singles to lead off the seventh brought the potential tying run to the plate before three-straight outs ended the rally.
Sydney Booker scored the lone run of the day for the Tide, coming home after a sixth-inning triple. Callaway was 2-3 at the plate with an RBI in her sixth SEC start of the season. Demi Turner made her return to the field as a pinch-runner in the first inning, her first action since suffering an injury on April 1 at Missouri. Sydney Littlejohn (14-7) took the loss in the circle, throwing 6.2 innings, while Makayla Martin (18-5) earned the win for Auburn with 6.0 innings pitched. Game-one winner Kaylee Carlson entered in the seventh to earn her fourth save of the season.
Similar to Friday’s game, the early innings on Saturday proved to be a pitcher’s duel as the teams combined to tally just four hits over the first four innings with no runs scored. With one out in the top of the fifth, three-straight singles loaded the bases for Auburn. A strikeout went for out number two but a bases-loaded walk and a double in the gap pushed four runs across for the Tigers before a popup ended the half-inning with Auburn leading, 4-0.
Alabama looked to claw back in the bottom of the fifth, loading the bases with two singles and a walk but a strikeout on a full count ultimately ended the inning as the Tide could not scratch a run across. With two out in the bottom of the sixth, Booker laced a hard-hit ball down the right-field line, sliding into third for a triple, and came home on a hard-hit RBI single by Callaway to cut the deficit to 4-1.
After a leadoff single by Auburn in the top of the seventh, Madi Moore entered to pitch for Alabama before an error put two on base and Littlejohn re-entered the circle. Back-to-back strikeouts brought Auburn down to its final out of the half-inning and Moore came back in to end the inning with a strikeout as it remained a three-run game heading to the bottom of the seventh.
Claire Jenkins led off the bottom of the seventh with a bunt single and Auburn turned to game-one winner Carlson in the circle. Turning back to the top of the order, Elissa Brown beat out an infield single to put two on base with nobody out. A deep fly ball in the next at-bat allowed Jenkins to tag up and move to third but a popup and a force out ended the rally as Auburn held on to win, 4-1, and clinch the weekend series.
The series finale is set for a Noon CT start on Sunday, May 7 live on ESPN2.